About Arthur H. Reynolds
Arthur H. Reynolds was born in Omaha, Nebraska on Nov. 2, 1916, but moved to Kingston, N.H. with his mother after his father died when he was two. He lived in Kingston for the remainder of his life. In 1936, he enlisted in the NH National Guard and served with the 197th Artillery Unit, then in 1940, wanting to see more of the world, he enlisted in the Army Air Corps and chose the Pacific Theater as his destination, arriving eventually in Manila in the Philippines. In 1941, on the same day as Pearl Harbor, the Japanese attacked the Philippines. US and Filipino forces held out on the Bataan peninsula for four months, eventually surrendering in April 1942 after suffering from disease, starvation and overwhelming odds. What followed was the infamous Bataan Death March and nearly four years of imprisonment in P.O.W. camps where the treatment was brutal and slave labor was the norm. Like thousands of others who underwent this ordeal, Reynolds suffered malnutrition, beriberi, malaria, and dysentery without proper medical treatment. He went more than a year without shoes. But at war’s end, he was able to walk out of the camp on his own two legs.
After the war, Reynolds went on to serve twenty years in the U.S. Air Force earning a Bronze Star, a Purple Heart, a Good Conduct Medal, and a Korean War National Defense Medal among many other decorations. When he left the service, he worked for the Kingston school department and later as a supply officer for a local bank. He also opened an antique shop and was instrumental in establishing the Kingston Historical Museum. he died after a road accident in January 2004.
About the Arthur H. Reynolds WWII/P.O.W. Papers
The collection consists of materials related to Reynolds’ WWII service in the Army Air Force Corps, Bataan Death March, POW status, and POW association activities after the war. It includes correspondence, photographs, clippings, publications, and memorabilia.